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Press Release

PUC Announces Appointments to Consumer Advisory Council

Published on 7/11/2019

Filed under: Electric Gas Water and Wastewater Telecommunications Transportation and Safety

HARRISBURG – The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today announced a series of appointments to its Consumer Advisory Council (CAC), which provides input to the PUC on issues important to utility customers. Members of the CAC will serve through June 30, 2021. 

New CAC members appointed by the Commission today include:

  • Mary Bach is a long-time independent consumer advocate from Murrysville, Westmoreland County. A former high school teacher, Bach is volunteer chair of AARP’s Pennsylvania Consumer Issues Task Force and has long been a strong voice for consumers across Pennsylvania.
  • Carl W. Bailey, of Philadelphia, has 35 years of experience working with community development and small business growth. He currently serves on the advisory committee for Pennsylvania Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and has also been a strong leadership voice for AARP programs in Pennsylvania.
  • Lenora M. Best has an extensive background in consumer protection policy. A retired PUC manager, Best brings decades of experience working with utility and consumer organizations. She is a resident of Lower Paxton Township, Dauphin County.
  • Sylvia P. Simms is an advocate for high-quality education – especially in low-income neighborhoods. A Philadelphia resident, Simms is the founder PARENT POWER, a training program to get families more involved in their children’s education and has been involved with community improvement efforts for more than a decade.

The Commission also ratified the following new member appointment:

  • Justin Udo, a reporter for KYW Newsradio in Philadelphia and former Western Pennsylvania resident, brings a journalistic background to the CAC – blending research and storytelling that includes consumer and community issues. Udo has been appointed to the CAC by Lt. Gov. John Fetterman.

The following reappointments from state executive offices and legislators were ratified by the PUC today:

  • Sonny Popowsky, former Pennsylvania Consumer Advocate (serving from 1990 to 2012), is a nationally regarded expert on state and national consumer and utility issues. Popowsky, of Philadelphia, has been reappointed by Gov. Tom Wolf.
  • Ralph G. Douglass, of Bensalem, Bucks County, is semi-retired from service as President of PECA Inc., an electronics design and manufacturing firm, for which he continues to provide consulting services. Douglass currently serves as chairman of the CAC and has been reappointed by Sen. Robert M. Tomlinson (R-Bucks), the Majority Chairman of the Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure Committee.

Also reappointed by the PUC are the following at-large CAC members:

  • Patrick M. Cicero, Director of the Pennsylvania Utility Law Project (PULP), a statewide legal aid office, based in Harrisburg, that serves low-income households in utility and energy matters. He is a resident of Mechanicsburg, Cumberland County and currently serves as vice chairman of the CAC.
  • Timothy B. Hennessey is owner of Phoenix Festival Productions, an event-planning company in North Coventry Township, Chester County. He is a former member of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection’s Cleanup Standards Scientific Advisory Board. 
  • Chad Quinn, of Lawrence County, is Chief Executive Officer of Pittsburgh-based Dollar Energy Fund, which works to improve the quality of life for households experiencing hardships by providing utility assistance and other services that lead to self-sufficiency.
  • Joseph E. Toner III, Chairman of the Uwclan Township Board of Supervisors and President of the Chester County Association of Township Officials.   

The Consumer Advisory Council advises the PUC Commissioners on matters related to the protection of consumer interests under the jurisdiction of the PUC. Council meetings are held bimonthly and are open to the public. Members serve without compensation.

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission balances the needs of consumers and utilities; ensures safe and reliable utility service at reasonable rates; protects the public interest; educates consumers to make independent and informed utility choices; furthers economic development; and fosters new technologies and competitive markets in an environmentally sound manner.

For recent news releases and video of select Commission proceedings or more information about the PUC, visit our website at Follow the PUC on Twitter – @PA_PUC for all things utility.  “Like” Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission on Facebook for easy access to information on utility issues.

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